The Four Seasons in Limassol, Cyprus has been open since 1993 and is independently owned and operated by Muskita Hotels Ltd. It’s a Five Star deluxe property with 304 rooms, 6 restaurants, 4 bars, and extensive conference facilities, Shiseido Spa, a full range of sports and fitness facilities and a shopping area with exclusive boutiques, watches and jewelry. The Hotel is situated on its own sandy beach, which has been awarded with the Blue Flag (a symbol of cleanliness and safety awarded by the European Community) and is 8 kilometers East of Limassol city center.
The Four Seasons’ management is constantly looking for effective ways to build strong relations with its customers and optimize sales programs. The Hotel’s website is its important marketing tool that helps the property to attract and retain elite guests from all over the World.
Mr. Nick Aristou, the property’s Executive Director, decided to enhance the website with an online business chat solution. “Our objective was to make it easy for our customers to navigate the website,” says Mr. Aristou. “Also, we wanted to convert as many visitors into customers as possible by making it easy for them to complete bookings.”
Mr. Aristou, who has a strong technology background, did a thorough review of available products, including such market leaders as LivePerson. However, none of them matched Four Season’s specific needs. The main limitations were the lack of multilingual support, patchy compatibility with tablet users and absence of robust archival features.
Then Mr. Aristou came across LiveWebAssist, a chat solution deployed on the IceWarp site, and realized it was the perfect match. He decided to try it out on the Four Season’s site, but then found out it was not the final release yet. Still, Mr. Aristou went ahead and launched LiveWebAssist at Four Seasons’ webpage, assigning three operators to interact with customers.
From the very beginning, the Four Season’s customer service team was making the most of LiveWebAssist’s multilingual interface and Knowledgebase support features to interact with customers in English, Greek and Russian.. The property’s sales and marketing team started to see LiveWebAssist’s effect almost immediately – the bookings increased.
“LiveWebAssist contributed a lot to this on many occasions,” says Mr. Aristou. “Our analysis showed that customers booked because they were given real-time explanations through the chat service.”
Four Season’s technology team also liked LiveWebAssist’s capability to recognize returning Website visitors.
“The excellent feature helps an operator to resume the conversation from the same spot where it was ended or interrupted,” says Mr. Aristou. “That makes users spend on average 7-8 minutes on the site, a very high indicator.”
In an approach radically different form other chat products, LiveWebAsisst supports the InLine no-flash chat architecture, eliminating pop-up windows. This design allows more visitors to initiate chat sessions, because they don’t have to deal with popup blockers and assures usability for visitors from tablets like iPad or Android.
Additionally, this option gives actionable information about the visitors’ behavior.
“The operators can tell exactly where the user is on the site, so they can offer them immediate assistance, tell them where to go and answer questions with a high degree of relevancy,” says Mr. Aristou. “It’s a very useful feature.”
LiveWebAssist’s analytical capabilities helped the hotel to optimize its Internet marketing strategy.
“LiveWebAssist analytics capabilities are very good,” notes Mr. Aristou. “They are helping us to locate sources our customers are coming from. It’s a very effective tool, especially when used in conjunction with Google analytics.”
Another feature Four Seasons’ team found practical is LiveWebAssist Knowledgebase. At any point of the conversation, it allows to insert pre-approved messages (such as terms and conditions, cancellation policy, etc.) as well as URLs and graphics with a single click.
“It has been very useful, we have almost three pages of knowledgebase content now,” notes Mr. Aristou. “The option provides more professional outlook and helps to standardize responses. Operators don’t have to think about how to phrase them. In the near future, we are planning to extend the knowledgebase with images and, possibly, videos.”
According to Four Seasons’ technology team estimates, the training and ramp-up process was painless.
“The functionality of the program is simple, anybody who can use a social chat program can get accustomed to LiveWebAssist very easily,” notes Mr. Aristou.
For the support function, Four Seasons team used LiveWebAssist Direct Chat Technology, the VIP connection that gives dedicated access to key IceWarp support personnel. This option makes it possible to reach the important contacts no matter where they are – at their desktop, off-site, or on the road.
“The VIP link option has been very useful, and IceWarp support team was very prompt,” says Mr. Aristou.
Four Seasons is now planning to expand LiveWebAssist functionality.
“We are considered using it on mobile devices, and, possibly, integrating the solution with a new CRM system,” says Mr. Aristou.
In the future, the property is thinking about hiring more operators and starting to use LiveWebAssist automated translation functionality.
According to Mr. Aristou’s estimates, LiveWebAssist was showing compelling ROI from the day it was implemented.
“Just from my own observation, from the number of bookings that have been converted directly through LiveWebAssist, I can say that it has paid for itself almost immediately” says Mr. Aristou he would definitely recommend LiveWebAssist to other organizations in the hospitality industry.
“Selling hotel rooms is always a complex matter,” says Mr. Aristou. “Usually, hotel bookings for five+ star hotels are a very high-value item. It’s not a $10-20 purchase from Amazon. They are usually $5,000-6,000 per transactionand there are many issues for potential customers to understand before they actually commit to book. Anything that can give a customer greater confidence and prompt him to make a decision to buy is very valuable. LiveWebAssist gives us exactly that.”
Financial services company BT has begun sending its BT Super for Life customers personalised video superannuation statements.
The tailored videos, thought to be an Australian first, are the latest development by BT helping superannuation customers understand their funds. The video statement includes an animated summary of the customer's transactions for the year, estimates an expected balance and income at retirement based on current contributions and how it compares to a comfortable retirement standard.
The statements also include a calculator so customers can assess their likely retirement outcomes based on different scenarios. BT's Vicki Doyle said the video statements were designed to inform and educate customers and to make it easier for them to make smart choices about their superannuation now.
Customer service IT company Avaya has been awarded the 2014 Frost & Sullivan Asia Pacific Enterprise Networking Customer Value Enhancement Award.
The customer value enhancement award is given to a company which has enhanced customer value through its networking offerings and recorded revenue growth in its networking product line. Criteria include both the business impact achieved – including growth, customer acquisition, growth potential and operational efficiency – and customer impact, based on price performance value, and the customer experience across the entire process.
"Avaya successfully used fabric defined networking as the linchpin of business transformation in a highly competitive networking market," said Frost & Sullivan's Harsh Upadhyay. "Customers across APAC vouch that Avaya's solution is simple, easily deployable, and interoperable with legacy infrastructure."
Sydney – 16 October 2014 – Jabra, a leading manufacturer of innovative audio solutions, today announced its newest product series, Jabra Evolve™.
The series consists of five headsets all purpose-built for shutting out the hustle and bustle of the open office, including features that signal when the user doesn’t want to be disturbed. Jabra Evolve is the headset series employees will love to use yet will still address employers’ concerns around user productivity and adoption. The Jabra Evolve furthers this effort with a microphone boom arm discreetly integrating into the headband. Each model in the Jabra Evolve series is designed to meet style demands of a mainstream audience while continuing to reinforce employers’ ability to promote workplace productivity through personal device connectivity and a music-grade audio experience.
"The Jabra Evolve headsets create a complete personal concentration zone that boosts focus and work satisfaction for employees in increasingly open, loud and distracting workspaces," said Soren Schoennemann, Managing Director, Australia and New Zealand, Jabra.
"Studies show that knowledge workers are interrupted every 10 minutes. We have designed the Jabra Evolve series with both the employer and user in mind, delivering a vital solution to improve return on investment through increased workplace productivity and accelerated user adoption."